Fuel Your Creativity with Kristen VayDen

This blog series has been so much fun. I love seeing what other tricks you all have up your sleeves. Today, Kristen VayDen is sharing about soapmaking, cooking gluten-free, and voice lessons.

Shredded cabbage for sauerkraut

Joselyn asked me to write about something creative I do, other than writing. When I think about being creative, I think scrapbooking, arts and crafts and drawing. All things I’m not skilled in at all.  At all.  I can draw a mean stick figure, or color with the best of third graders, but my artistic skill ends there. Dead end.  But I do have a few redeeming qualities of creativity.  They grew out of a necessity to help my family be healthier and in turn, happier.  For one, I began baking gluten free.  Most of my family had been diagnosed with moderate to sever food allergies and the change was necessary. And for those who bake gluten free, you know it’s an exacting science that requires the most creative of skill and imagination. You take things that do not taste good apart, mix them, pray, and viola, you have a muffin!


I also started making my own soap, Komboocha (a fermented tea full of probiotics and vitamins) and sauerkraut.  I didn’t start the health kick over night, but as I realize how much fun making my own soap, gluten free treats and the results my family had because of the healthier choices, I was hooked.  Over time I would check to see how easy it would be to make my own detergent, lip balm, first aid salve etc. and slowly I began adding in little ‘experiments’ that would take tweaking till they turned out right.  Not only did my family save money with all my perfected ‘experiments’ but also we are healthier because of it.  My newest experiment was Labneh; a yogurt cheese that I rolled in olive oil and garlic herbs. My husband loved it. I have none left.


Labneh. The picture of the cheese rolled into balls and seasoned with herbs and garlic is the finished product.

One final creative flair I possess is voice coaching. Because I have so little extra time (four kids, enough said) I only a have taken on a few students, but I’ve coached for almost ten years. I teach classic education and formal training.  All my students sing in Italian (trust me, its actually easier than English) and fall in love with the language. It’s incredible how the proper technique, fundamentals and coaching can bring a voice to life.  Music has always been a huge part of my life. I’m thankful for the opportunity to share my gift and training with others! Plus, really, it’s just a lot of fun.

So that’s about all my creative skills. I can’t make pipe-cleaner men, or sketch a cat.  But I can teach you to sing in Italian and give you a gluten free muffin for the road.  It has to count for something, right?

Living London book coverMy newest release from Astraea Press is “Living London.”  It’s a journey back through time to find out if love is really worth the risk, and if you can trust your heart even if yours isn’t the one that might not be lying.  Of course it features handsome rakes, a few debutants and a great romance you won’t want to miss.  You can purchase it at Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Living-London-ebook/dp/B00B9DRQKY/ref=la_B00A0RWW04_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1363801993&sr=1-2 or Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/living-london-kristin-vayden/1114282813?ean=2940015990034 It’s also available at Astraea press http://www.astraeapress.com/#!/~/product/id=19541471

Thanks to Joselyn for hosting me on her blog and I hope you all have a wonderful week!



  1. Soap made of tea and sauerkraut? I wish we had smell-o-vision here. I would love to sample the fragrance and lather up with it. The yogurt cheese sounds like a winner to me. You are a creative gal in very special ways. Best wishes with your new release!!


  2. oops, soap made of tea, not made of sauerkraut…!! :-0


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